New children’s play village at Claire House

CLAIRE House Children’s Hospice has been given CBBC’s The Dengineers treatment as some of the grounds at its new site in Liverpool have been transformed into a series of themed dens, from fairground to disco, with their own wheelchair-accessible zip wire. At the Big Reveal event to celebrate the opening of the play area The Dengineers presenters Lauren Layfield and Hollyoaks’ Joe Tracini joined the children who had helped design and build the dens. Also on hand to offer their support were the Lord Mayor and Stephen Twigg, the MP for West Derby. There was massive pressure to get the dens built last week, with many builders and other tradespeople offering their services for free. The new play village will allow seriously ill children to spend time with their brothers and sisters, without the barriers of disability. “This is a playground like no other. It is huge and has lots of areas, each one with a different theme. As its fully accessible all the children who come to the hospice will be able to use it and there are a lot of things in it that you’d never imagine a child in a wheelchair could do. This is truly a place where you can leave your troubles behind and make wonderful memories,” said Laura Currie from the Claire House care team. The dens are on the new site of Claire House Liverpool, in West Derby, which opened at the beginning of the month. From September, it will start offering more desperately needed services to families of seriously and terminally ill children in Merseyside, such as day-care, counselling, holistic therapies and hospice to home support. Claire House, that already runs a hospice on the Wirral, is developing the site as it is struggling to meet the demand to care for the seriously and terminally ill children in the area who desperately need its help. The charity’s long-term ambition is to develop a new hospice on the site, however, it is in the early stages of the project.